Abandon basket campaigns are a key retargeting...
Email is a long established solution that ticks a lot of the boxes as a marcom tool – we can quickly learn what variables our audience responds to and easily fine-tune our methodology to achieve tangible results. Yet the limitations imposed through standardisation, regulations and mediocre software leaves email marketing in limbo for an industry experiencing rapid technological advances and demanding customer expectations. With an ever-increasing volume of communication channels available to marketers, many much more sophisticated than email, how much resource should we be investing in email marketing?
We don’t think so. Reports of email’s death appear to have been greatly exaggerated. In a recent report, researcher group Radicati expect the number of emails sent and received will grow by 3% per year. Yet the technology landscape is changing, there are a plethora of options available and the sector is still growing. The image below demonstrates the sheer volume of marketing technology available .
In order for an email marketing strategy to be an integral part of the continuing martech revolution, rather than catching up with it, brands need to seriously consider how customers are consuming information and what will be a driver for change in those consumption patterns.
One of the major barriers identified to email marketing success relates to data – whether it be siloed data, data degradation or simply not having enough (DMA, 2016). Yet, data analysis was identified as one of the most important parts of the marketer’s role in a 2016 study by Marketing Week, while Econsultancy’s Digital Trends report found more organisations choosing “data-driven marketing” as their priority for 2016 than any other.
All of this means that data infrastructure will be a top investment for firms over the next few years, as big data and analysis become more integral to marketing and customer engagement strategies. This will, in turn, have a knock-on effect on the usage and ROI of email marketing. Once the data is captured and understood, you can deliver the right message, through the right channel on the right device at the right time.
Big Data is paving the way for email marketing to become personalised and behaviourally triggered. Far more than adding the recipient’s name into the subject line of an email (reported to increase open rates by 26%), personalisation has advanced to the stage when businesses can offer journeys unique to each individual. Emails that are relevant and timely to each individual customer, are ultimately more valuable and emotionally engaging. In this way, hyper personalised will drive more profitable results. For email marketing, this means that the content and the timings of any email sends need to be tailored specifically to the customer and triggered by particular behaviours.
Yet a seamless relationship between data management and personalisation is still not par for the course. Recent research suggests that although a huge majority of marketers are prioritizing personalisation, only a fraction have the ability to capture customer intent and deliver real-time, behaviour based marketing across channels.
Evidently there is a gap between the marrying customer data and delivering personalised and emotionally engaging messaging. Here lies the powerful potential that email marketing needs to cultivate in order to survive.
For email marketing to survive the Martech revolution, there is a need for Big Data and Personalisation to become the baseline standard. Historically, email marketing has been managed through an ESP (Email Service Provider). Yet, as is the common theme of this piece, the technology landscape has changed, and customer demands have changed with it. The platforms used should result in far higher levels of customer engagement by leveraging an integrated omni-channel approach that comes from a robust data management and behaviour-based communication strategy.
Email marketing functionality now comes bundled in with marketing automation, CRM and campaign management solutions, which in turn offer a wide range of data unifying additional functionality. Onsite campaigns, lead nurturing, analytics, social integration – these can often now be managed from one central place, meaning that the information held in these distinct areas can be merged into an email marketing strategy, making it richer and more relevant for the recipient – this ticks all the boxes for the personalised communications that customers now expect and demand.
Fruugo used the Intilery platform to create a robust Single Customer View across multiple devices and channels, leveraging both powerful data capturing and hyper personalisation elements of the software. The result was that Fruugo can now attribute multi-currency revenue to email campaigns which serves to highlight the importance in using the right technology to bring the full capabilities of email marketing to the next level.
These enhanced capabilities, such as those offered as part of the Intilery platform, allow marketers to deploy campaigns more effectively than any that have gone before, breathing new life into email marketing and ensuring its adaptation within the martech revolution.